5 Tips for Driving Through the Rain

Driving through the rain can be very dangerous without knowing how to properly handle concerns like wet roads and low visibility.

But following these five driving tips can help you navigate even the stormiest of streets.

Make Sure Your Car is Ready for the Rain

Even highly trained drivers need to rely on their car; especially during the roughest of weather. Extreme weather conditions like sleet, snow and even rain, can push your car to its limits, so it’s very important to make sure that key components of your automobile are well maintained and ready for the rain.

Make sure to check your brakes on a regular basis, and change your tires as soon as they begin to bald. Worn out tires reduce your traction on slippery roads and can quickly send your car skidding out of control.

Stay Safe, Slow Down

Reduce your speed proportional to the strength of the rain or to the wetness of the road. Rains not only affect the quality of the streets, but the distance of your line of sight. To compensate, bring your car down to safe cruising speed as soon as the rain begins to affect your visibility. Driving slow is also important when passing through wet roads long after the rains have stopped. When passing puddles and patches of water, don’t try to bulldozer through the water, especially without knowing the quality of the roads underneath the water.

Turn On Your Headlights/Hazard Lights

Headlights aren’t only used during the night; they also act as a means of spotting other cars during rough weather. When visibility begins to drop, immediately turn on your headlights. Even if it’s in the middle of the afternoon, rain can effectively cut your line of sight to only a few meters ahead of you and headlights can be that life-saving difference between spotting a car ahead of you or warding off incoming cars that are veering into the wrong lane.

Hazard lights also work the same way by literally transmitting your presence to cars behind you. This keeps other drivers from rear-ending you during low-visibility weather.

Maintain a Safe Distance from Other Cars

When driving through heavy rain, maintain a safe distance from other cars. Make sure to follow the “3 second rule”, where you give yourself no less than 3 seconds of travel time in between cars. This gives you ample time to react in case the car in front of you loses control.

Although visibility can become difficult during heavy rains, simply follow the previous tips to make sure that you stay safe in spite of bad line of sight.

Learn to Steer Into a Skid

Despite all these tips, accidents are sometimes unavoidable. One of the most common concerns when driving through the rain is when a driver loses control of their car due to wet and slippery roads; most commonly known as a “skid”.

While most drivers simply jam on the breaks when their car begins to skid, this isn’t enough when going at high speeds or once your tires have lost all traction. Instead, learn to “steer into a skid”. When your car begins to skid, simply turn your car towards the direction you want to go. This allows the tail of your car to align with the front of your vehicle. However, newer model cars come with anti-lock brakes that make this easier to do.

Remember, safety is paramount when driving through the rain. Stay safe for the sake of yourself and others, especially on wet roads.